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Lavrov briefs Putin on Kerry’s letter stating US vision of situation in Ukraine

March 10, 2014, 20:25 UTC+3 SOCHI
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SOCHI, March 10, /ITAR-TASS/. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov briefed President Vladimir Putin on the contents of the document he had received from U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, which states the U.S. vision of the situation in Ukraine.

The document, received on Friday, March 7, contains “a concept which does not quite agree with us because everything was stated in terms of allegedly having a conflict between Russia and Ukraine and in terms of accepting the fait accompli,” Lavrov said at a meeting with Putin on Monday, March 10.

“Our partners suggested proceeding from this situation created by the coup,” he added.

At the beginning of the meeting, Putin asked Lavrov to tell him about the talks with foreign partners on the situation in Ukraine. “And I also asked you, following the American request, to invite the Secretary of State, Mr John Kerry over here, who wanted to come to Russia for further consultations,” the president said.

However Lavrov said that Kerry had postponed his visit to Russia scheduled for Monday.

Lavrov said Kerry had been invited to come to Russia to discuss the situation in Ukraine. “We suggested that he come today, I think, and we were prepared to receive him. He gave his preliminary consent. He then called me on Saturday and said he would like to postpone it for a while,” the minister said.

When postponing the visit, Kerry cited as the reason the fact that Washington was drafting a new document which was then handed over to the Russian Foreign Ministry. “Frankly speaking, we have many questions about this [document,],” Lavrov said.

The minister also told the president that, following his instructions, the Foreign Ministry was engaged in consultations with foreign partners on the situation in Ukraine throughout last week. Their participants were looking for “solutions that would allow all of us to help settle the situation in Ukraine,” Lavrov said.

“At one of the rounds of bilateral contacts our partners suggested that we and the Americans should try to study some of the approaches,” he added.

“We prepared, together with members of the Russian Security Council, our counter-proposals [for the U.S.]. They aim to put the situation on the basis of international law and take into account the interests of all Ukrainians without exception,” Lavrov said.

“We agreed to discuss these proposals at today’s meeting. I hope that immediately after that we will be able to hand them over to our partners in order to continue the dialogue,” the minister said.

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